On 10/18/2011 12:13 PM, Bill Pitz wrote:
> On Oct 18, 2011, at 10:29 AM, M.B. wrote:
>> Seems to me the first couple years of R&P steering on 4x4 Daks and Durangos caused problems. I know of two separate people (one with a dak, one with a durango) that had big power steering leaks before 75k.
> Yep, had to have the steering rack replaced on mine (2000 4x4) well before 75k miles. I don't remember exactly when it was, but probably around 60K.
Good, so it wasn't a misconception on my part. ;)
I like the feel of the 2000+ 4x4 with the R&P, but the old recirculating
ball steering was more reliable, but has a lot more parts to wear out
too (tie rods, pitman arm, idler arms...)
I think the R&P steering is in a position more likely to be damaged from
underbody hits too.
The 87-96 Daks seem to be a bit beefier on the front end too, there's
that big crossmember that the lower control arms bolt to on the first
gen, not so much on the 97+. Probably weighs a ton so they got rid of
it. Probably also one reason why the 1st/2nd gen Dakota is rated better
in front impacts.
Of course the 97-04 has better side impact protection, as I personally
tested out with the assistance of a Toyota Camry ramming the passenger
side of an '00 Dakota at 45mph. ;)
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